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|Index||263 reviews in total|
Yet another display of Eddie Murphie's disdain for Black women. Especially if that Black woman is Dark Skinned. Nearly every movie I've see Eddie make has the Big, Fat and Ugly woman be dark skinned where the acceptable and desirable woman is a light skinned Black woman with long hair. I'm sick of seeing this. Eddie needs to switch up his formula. Every movie he makes is the same premises, the main character is trying to escape some ugly parody of a dark skinned black woman and attempting to win the light skinned woman. This is cooning at its worst. Plus I'm sick of seeing Black men in drag the joke is long since worn out.
Okay, Mr. Murphy, we get it. By your choice of work of late, you seem
to think that you have been shortchanged in terms of women, family, and
life. Further, you seem to feel misunderstood as a father, as a man,
and as a person. I don't know where this bitterness comes from, but in
my opinion, it's ruined your career.
Gone is the action hero with a promising future. Gone is the romantic lead with a bright career. Gone is the comedian with a strong and centered sense of humor. Enter, Murphy the fool; Murphy the donkey.
It really doesn't matter what this movie is even ABOUT, as it doesn't seem to know, either. But it seems pretty low, the lowest form of comedy, about a low rent relationship that falls apart because it has nowhere to go, while taking everyone around down with it. There, that's the synopsis in a nutshell.
It's as if Murphy is saying that he wants his fantasy fairy tale life and he wants it now. Every movie he's done of late reflects everything he seems to want, I just can't help wondering if his apparent comfort in women's clothing is a part of that?
I hate to say this but if muddled stupid inane superfluous crap like this is all Murphy has to offer, then it is my opinion that he should stick to voicing the Donkey. Sorry Eddie Murphy, but you just ain't the man anymore. Unless something drastically changes, you're done.
This is crap no matter how you look at it. It's a .000001/10 from...
the Fiend :.
Eddie Murphy had great success with his Nutty Professor movies, so why
not make another film where Eddie plays several roles, including one
being a horrible obese woman. That'll be funny, right? You can judge
for yourself, but this Eddie Murphy comedy is more dumb than funny,
though it does have it's moments. At some points you may find yourself
laughing, and at the next moment you'll be cringing and hoping this
movie ends. Norbit is certainly not as terrible as some have made it
out to be, but it's still pretty darn bad!
Norbit (Eddie Murphy) is a nerdy guy who met his future wife Rasputia (Eddie Murphy) after being picked on by some bullies. She stood up for him, but now as adults, she picks on him as much as she can. Norbit grew up in an orphanage run by nice, but racist old Mr. Wong (Eddie Murphy). Norbit was previously in love with Kate (Thandie Newton...thank goodness she's not played by Eddie Murphy), a girl at the orphanage with him, but she was adopted, and it's not until after his marriage to Rasputia that he sees her again, only to fall back in love with her. She's engaged to Deion (Cuba Gooding Jr.) who secretly wants to tear the old orphanage down and make it into a strip club. Will Norbit and Kate fall in love? Will Deion's devious plan work? Will Eddie Murphy ever make another good live action comedy? The answer to all these questions are quite obvious.
I'll start with the positives. The make up on Eddie Murphy to make Rasputia is fantastically realistic. It deserved the Academy Award it was up for. She's disgusting to look at, and many of the jokes catch you by surprise with shock value. A few of the crude jokes are too dumb not to laugh at (sounds weird I know), and occasionally this movie produces some laughs. The direction is bright and vibrant and looks pretty good.
Now the negatives. The plot is horrible, and the romance between Norbit and Kate is cringe worthy. It's just an awful hollow romance. The laughs are there, but they are way too infrequent. Between each laugh is an awkward silence due to bad jokes, stupid acting and strange plotting. Worst of all, is the climax of the movie. This has to be one of the worst climaxes ever written. Let's just say it takes place in a church, and outside of the church, and it is so dumb, and unfunny it was painful to watch. The climax alone brings the already floundering film down a notch in my book.
Overall, this is movie has some laughs, a heart near the right place, and some outstanding makeups effects, but with a script like this, almost nothing was salvaged.
My rating: * 1/2 out of ****. 95 mins. PG-13 for language and crude/sexual humor.
For those of you who find nothing remotely funny about large, loud, uneducated black women, you may safely skip "Norbit," which sounds like a dog cartoon, anyway. For Eddie Murphy fans, it will depend on your tolerance for seeing him play three roles: a nerd right out of THE NUTTY PROFESSOR, a racist Chinaman and the large, loud, uneducated black woman mentioned above. Murphy clearly is working out some serious demons with this third character, who is simply not funny. Norbit, the nerdy character, is married to Rasputia, the loud and large, uneducated black woman who runs Norbit ragged. Out of the blue, Norbit's old flame (Thandie Newton) returns to town with her conniving fiancé (Cuba Gooding), and you can probably guess the rest. Eddie is no Madea or even Big Momma. Essentially, the movie is a rehash of the two PROFESSOR flicks, right down to the fart jokes.
I don't even have to watch it, just from watching clips and Ebert &
Roeper reviewing it just shows how pathetic and offensive it truly is.
Don't EVER watch this, save your money and watch Dreamgirls instead, where Eddie Murphy is actually great as a SUPPORTING ACTOR.
That's what he should be from now on, a SUPPORTING ACTOR, what the hell has Eddie Murphy gotten himself into? He has made one horrible movie after the next and he's a SEQUEL-WHORE. ENOUGH! Eddie Murphy has jumped the shark time and time again and this time the shark just jumped up and ate him, retire already Eddie, you were great back in the day, now you're too kid-friendly...makes me wanna puke.
Some movies do not exist as films but as products, part of a brand.
This year has seen several films of this type. Pirates of the
Caribbean, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are the most obvious
examples, but Eddie Murphy's latest entry into the self-loathing
minstrel show genre, Norbit is little more than a product itself.
Norbit tells the story of the eponymous slightly mentally challenged and speech impediment afflicted young orphan who is put through the ringer by his Wife of Bath-esquire bride (both played by Murphy) and her criminally inclined family (not played by Murphy). Norbit seems content with this life until his childhood sweetheart (the unfortunately cast Thandie Newton in a role that should have been played by Murphy too) turns up on the scene. From there, the film spirals into an anti-romantic comedy with Norbit's wife Rasputia trying to kill Norbit and his chances at happiness.
There is a lot going on in Norbit. It's an angrier movie than Murphy has made in years. There is a great deal of anguish, deep seeded self loathing, racial self hatred and disgust boiling just below the surface at any given moment. Beyond the obvious ego-tripping (at the gates of dawn) of Murphy, playing 3 of the principal characters there is something more to it. Under the pretense of playing multiple characters Murphy has rough sex with himself, slaps himself around, tells himself he is worthless, calls himself "hideous" and tries to kill himself.
Then there is the fact that this film, like Martin Lawrence's Big Momma's House and the "Madea" franchise of allegedly uplifting and positive plays/movies/reinforcements of reductive stereotypes, is predicated upon the Aunt Jemima image of a black slave woman. Maybe I'm overly sensitive, but I find the whole minstrel show, black face motif to be unnerving to say the least.
But then, maybe I'm not smart enough for this movie.
There are things going on, hatred of the dark skinned characters, who are almost universally villainous, while expounding upon the inherent goodness of the lighter skinned characters. Murphy's bizarre (though admittedly often hilarious) turn as an Asian American that lead to much deeper insight into race relations than Crash ever could. Maybe Spike Lee should write a book on this film.
The movie itself is messy. Plot lines go nowhere; characters enter and exit for no reason, endless strings of tired, racist stereotypes that are repeated as straight forward jokes. That said, the effects work by Rick Baker is Oscar worthy, the direction is adequate bringing a little grace to the proceedings and the music is quiet good. None of that can save this film however.
There are only 2 reasons to see this movie.
A: If you are a sociology major looking into the troubles of modern day African Americans adapting to a world run by white men.
B: If you are as big a fan of make up effects as is humanly possible.
Also, the Asian grandfather character is pretty funny, even if he does rank higher than Amos & Andy levels on the bigotry scale Chinese exclusion act, wha? For more reviews please visit www.collider.com
As a child Norbit is abandoned by his parents at the orphanage of Mr
Wong. He grows up a mild-manner but very put-upon man who finds himself
in a relationship with the monstrous, fat and bullying Rasputia, mainly
because she fought off other bullies down the years. As an adult he is
married to her and seems to have given up any hope of ever being happy
or even just not being terrified on a daily basis. All that could
change though when a former childhood sweetheart from the orphanage
(the unfeasibly gorgeous Kate Thomas) turns up back in town with plans
to buy the orphanage from Mr Wong and improve it.
Of course I knew that this film was going to be terrible before I watched it, it is the accepted wisdom that this is vile and repulsive and the film that cost Eddie Murphy his Oscar for Dreamgirls. However when such condemnation is delivered I often wonder if it can be so deserved and, given that Norbit was greeted less kindly that a paedophile arriving at court, I decided to check it out. What I found does not match with the savage comments I have read and heard because to my mind this is no worse than many other base and childish comedies put out for a target audience of, presumably, unevolved slime. However do not get me wrong and mistake this very slight defence for anything approaching praise because it is most certainly not. Norbit is a bad film. It seems to rely solely on physical gags that are uninspired, unimaginative and unfunny. While you sit in a laughless sea of silence, the viewer has to then try and care about the characters to make the story work which it doesn't because you never do.
I can see what attracted Murphy because it is a bit like Nutty Professor, which was a hit. In his defence he does do a reasonable job with what is given to him just that what he is given to do stinks, really stinks. As an actor Norbit calls me to question his judgement, but not his talent. Of course the fact that he is also credited as a writer does mean that what little sympathy I have for him dries up pretty quickly once I press play. Newton clearly took this for the money and she seems half-asleep throughout and cannot even muster a bit of chemistry with Murphy's Norbit. Again though I would say that the actors are left high and dry by the material and the only thing I judge them on is why they did this in the first place. Conversely the only, rare, moments of amusement (and it is no more than that but does feel like ice water in a desert) are from the smaller characters played by Crews, Mighty Rasta and Powell but more importantly, two clichéd but funny "pimps" from Griffin and Williams hardly impressive turns but at least quite funny. Gooding Jr is in it but I do wonder why that doesn't surprise me at all.
Norbit is not the spawn of Satan or the worst film you will ever see it is just very poor. I did not find it offensive, I just found it roundly lazy and unlikable, with little or no comedy, characters or story to hold my interest. The very odd funny moment is lost in the sea of pathetic writing and delivery. The only footnote to add is that it did deserve the Academy's nod for make-up because the prosthetics and make-up is fantastic and those involved from this side should be the only ones to really have even a bit of pride in this film.
Pretty soon now, Eddie Murphy is going to have to start wearing all
that clever makeup to prevent people from staying away in droves when
they realise it's another Eddie Murphy movie. Let's face it, with the
exception of the first Shrek film the guy hasn't appeared in a decent
movie this century and, on the evidence of this piece of work, (which
he co-wrote), it's going to be a long time before we see anything that
even remotely approached the calibre of his early work.
Murphy plays a fat black woman called Rasputia in this one. He also plays Norbit, the doormat she has bullied into marriage, and if the 'comedy' content was as impressive as the technical wizardry used to convince us we are watching two different people on screen at the same time we'd all still be laughing weeks after we finished watching it. Murphy is unrecognisable as the grotesque Rasputia, and plays her for broad laughs against straight man Norbit. There are one or two laughs (Rasputia's boobs sounding the car's horn every time she climbed behind the wheel raised a smile), but for the most part it just isn't funny or interesting.
If you are someone who enjoyed movies like Freddy got Fingered and Epic
Movie, please do not read this review...There is a pretty good chance
that you will like this movie.
Similar to normal human beings who have seen this movie, I strongly believe that deciding to watch Norbit is a decision one will definitely regret...if you have 100 free minutes, I am sure that you will find zillion things more interesting to do.
I still can't imagine how I managed to sit through the whole film until the end. This has been one of the worst comedy movies that I have ever seen. Go watch a romantic comedy, a frat pack movie, or even The Nutty Professor but I urge you to avoid seeing this movie at all costs. I understand that people may have different tastes but believe me; a 3.6/10 rating sounds too high for such lame film.
I am happy to know that this movie was awarded several Golden Raspberry (Razzies) awards...If you still insist to watch this movie despite all the bad reviews and low ratings, then I recommend that you go and visit a doctor.
...but this was HARDLY a noteworthy film for anyone involved,save maybe
makeup master Rick Baker.
Eddie Murphy does as he has done quite a bit dating back to "Coming to America",playing three different roles,including the title character,a basically sweet,good-natured doormat who makes the mistake of going with and eventually marrying the obese girl who protected him on the school playground. His true love, a veritable angel of a girl named Kate(Thandie Newton),then one day re-appears in his life, thus creating the predictable complications.
Much was made over the ethnic stereotypes that are put on display here--besides the cartoonish,subject-of-jokes fat black lady that is Norbit's girlfriend/wife Rasputia--and there's certainly grounds to feel that Murphy and his brother(longtime collaborator and former "Chappelle Show" partner-in-crime Charles Q.Murphy) conceived and co-wrote a fairly insulting,gleefully politically incorrect script and story here. Also,the way the story plays out suggests a script that could've used a some tightening. But there is JUST enough here to--at least in my humble opinion--be funny and entertaining. The supporting cast, save Eddie Griffin and KAtt Williams as well-meaning pimps(!),seem to be there mainly as foils or plot support. This is pretty much exclusively Eddie Murphy's movie(big surprise)and as such,his florid talent,added to the great make-up by BAker(as mentioned earlier),are pretty much the entirety of what holds this movie up.
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